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Placement student enjoys global corporate role

A high-level work placement with one of Britain’s best-known global brands will see a De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) student travel the world to improve the company’s project management approach.

Gareth Watson is in the middle of a year-long placement with Rolls-Royce, working as a Global Deployment Co-ordinator in the organisation’s corporate project management team.

Gareth Watson with an RB211 engine

Gareth Watson in front of a huge Rolls-Royce RB211 engine

He has completed two years of his Business and Globalisation degree but since June has been working for Rolls-Royce at its Bristol offices and is set to travel soon to Indianapolis in the USA, and to Germany to complete work projects.

“This is such a great opportunity for me,” the 20-year-old said.

“Rolls-Royce has five different businesses – nuclear, civil aerospace, defence aerospace, marine and power systems – and we are trying to create a standardised approach to project management across all of them.

Gareth Watson SUBMARINE resized

“I’m thoroughly involved in this important project which is very exciting and allowing me to see how business applies project management.

“It has also given me the opportunity to meet and learn from project management professionals and to see how my skills can be used in a business environment.”

Gareth was born and brought up in Botswana in southern Africa before moving to Singapore and then to boarding school in Norfolk.

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He believes one reason he secured the placement at Rolls-Royce is because of the ways in which he threw himself into various activities while studying at DMU.

These included volunteering to be his course student rep and working on DMU’s Policy Commission during its 100 Ideas for Europe campaign ahead of the 2016 Brexit Referendum.

“I would urge students to get involved in things like this because it helps you get good placements,” he added.

“When you leave university, your degree is a valuable piece of paper, but you can’t just rely on it to get you a good job.

“The fact that I am working at somewhere like Rolls-Royce is really going to bolster my experience levels and hopefully open up my future career opportunities.”

Gareth Watson JET FIGHTER cropped

Gareth also benefited from support and advice from DMU’s Placement Team with his CV and through the application process.

DMU placement teams work in each faculty to create opportunities for students to gain professional experiences at a wide range of companies, from sandwich-year placements to others of varying lengths.
Posted on Monday 4th December 2017

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